Submitted: Beware of HR Scam

Hi, please help me spread this.

I am part of HR in a company in Lakewood. I just got a call from a number asking to verify an employment for an employee (I’m getting that a lot these days as my workmates are refinancing so I already know the rodeo).

So the rep on the other end tells me that he is calling to verify employment for one of my workmates, and I answer that they work here. The next question is usually what the hire date is and how likely they are to stay. In this case, he asked me for the last 4 of her social.

I got wary right away and told him that I was never questioned that. Then he tells me that they are requiring that, and I need to answer. I said that the person they are inquiring about happens to work alongsideĀ  me and she hasn’t mentioned that she is buying or refinancing anything.

When I asked him to tell me what it’s about and a number I can call back when this is confirmed, he tells me that there is no need, and then asks me for my name. I told him that I believe this is a scam call, to which he told me “okay ma’am, have a good day.”

Please be careful when giving over information.

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  1. I do HR too. I’ve also been getting alot of requests for employment verification but never over the phone. They always send me an email. I would be wary of all because they can scam with phone and email too.

  2. As someone who works in HR as received many, MANY verifications of employment, I will never respond to a request without a signed release from the employee in question. I simply tell the caller (or the person who sent the email with the request) that I am not legally allowed to release this information without the signed form. Many times they try to send a form at that point without the signature. I do not release until I have the signed form. This helps to avoid releasing private information in error.

  3. Just a tip – anytime you are asked for a W9 with your SSN on it (when you start working for a new job) do NOT give them your SS. Just get an EIN from the IRS and use that number. This way your employer will not have your SSN to even be able to give it out.
    If it free and anyone can use it on place of a SSN on a W9.
    Just google “apply irs ein online”.

  4. If you are being hired as an employee you need to submit a W-4 with an SSN or TIN if you don’t have an SSN, not a W-9.

    Businesses and contractors need to provide a W-9 and only they can get an IRS EIN which is an Employer Identification Number, not an Employee Identification number. Whoever they contract with is required to send you a 1099-G which you must file with your taxes showing income which you have to pay taxes on. You can use your SSN or TIN instead of an EIN for business purposes.

    Hope that clears things up. Advice: Make sure your paperwork is in order, know the rules because the IRS never forgets.

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